I was going to make this for other people. And I did – I shared. It was dessert, and it was lovely. But the next time I make this, I am taking the phone off the hook and not going online and sending Nick away and eating the entire batch myself, because this is what love tastes like. It’s robust and rich, and reminds me of something you might eat to cool off in Napa, where the air smells like fruit must and sea salt and redwoods and everywhere you go you hear the rustle of leaves and the pop of red wine corks pulling free. It’s like that: winy, concentrated purple bliss, with hints of caramel and just the right amount of puckery bittersweetness. Make it, the grapes are ripe now. It’s time, and I’d hate for you to regret not having this.
Coronation grape granita
(Serves six to eight.)
- 1 1/2 lbs. Coronation grapes
- Juice of 1 lemon (about 2 tbsp.)
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cups water
Pluck 1 1/2 pounds of coronation grapes from their stems, and plop them into a pot on the stove. Add sugar, lemon, and water, and simmer over medium-high heat until the grapes are soft and the liquid is purple and dark.
Remove from heat, and mash with a potato masher. Squeeze through a fine-mesh sieve into a 9″x13″ glass baking sheet, and put into the freezer.
Every hour for the first three hours after that, pull the juice out of the freezer and scrape with a fork to move the ice crystals around, which keeps them from becoming a solid mass. After that, just pop in every once in awhile to be sure that all is well, scraping as needed.
Remove from the freezer about ten minutes before serving, and scrape with a spoon into serving dishes. Serve as is, or with whipped cream. Swoon.
Did I just tell you about dessert first? I guess I did. Come back soon – I have lots to tell you, all about baked beans and ribs and cornbread with blackberries and wonderful things like that.
*Note: I originally called the grapes “concord” because until this morning when I read the package, I thought that’s what they were called. No. They’re coronation grapes, and they’re marvellous. But you can make this with concord grapes if that’s what you’ve got. Cheers.